At the core of any game are its rules. Even the most wonderfully creative and masterfully designed game can be ruined by a set of rules that are poorly thought out, insufficient in scope, or inadequately enforced. This is especially true for MUDs or other online games. On a role-playing game, the rules become even more crucial. Without them, a game wishing to have a roleplaying focus can quickly degenerate into a pure hack-n-slash game where the social fare includes chatting about sports and movies rather than quests and the latest decree of the local magistrate. For these reasons, we have tried to create rules and policies that enhance our role-play environment. Please be sure to read the Policy board for complete information.
Below are just some comments on why we approach things the way we do. As a role-playing mud this subject is key to the success of our mud. Therefore, expect more information to be added to this page.
Names have enormous effect on our world, as they are one of the first things someone sees when they interact with other players. You can be sure that your role-playing environment will suffer if "Sheerdarknes" waltzes into a tavern filled with players who are otherwise acting in character. This is the reason for our strict naming policy.
In any role-playing game, communication is one of the most important elements of the game. It is absolutely vital that you keep IC (in-character) and OOC (out-of-character) communication completely separate from each other. It will drive other players crazy if their exciting and very entertaining role-playing situation gets disturbed by some player who walks into the room asking who won the latest football game.
Out-of-character communication should be used only when absolutely necessary and kept to a minimum.
Since MUDs are social games, it is understandable that players will want to chat and get to know the other people they are gaming with. This is certainly not a bad thing, and in fact it actually helps your players feel like more a part of your game community. Just be sure to remember that the MUD is for role-playing and adventuring in our Dragonlance world.
Some aspects of this rule fall under the explanation of rules on communication, but this topic is important enough to warrant specific discussion. It is our belief that players will feel more at ease in immersing themselves in a role if the world around them feels sufficiently real and engaging.
Giving too much numerical data can have a significant negative effect on the necessary mystery that ensures surprise and excitement in playing the game. That is why we do not give out any information on things like combat formulas, damage in battle, the exact statistics of a foe, friend, weapon, or armor. In "real life", we rarely have access to such explicit, absolute information, and in many cases, there is no way to make such whole number determinations.
As a corollary to this, players should not walk around discussing any numerical information that they are able to obtain. In fact, such action is heavily frowned upon by the imms and more often than not would be against policy. Of course, you do have access to certain numerical data (such as hit points), but that doesn't mean there are not in-character ways to address this information. For example: "After the battle, I felt as if half my health had been drained" is preferable to "Ouch! I lost half my hit points!".